The Iowa Ihms: Older brother Steven


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Steven Ihm doesn’t remember when or where he and his younger sister first began playing golf. He does know, however, that he didn’t expect his sister to commit to his main sport until she did during in her senior year in 2012.

Steven joined the Iowa squad in 2010, and at that time, his little sister Amy — then a junior in high school — wasn’t even thinking about playing college golf.

Playing golf in college had long been something Steven wanted, but he says it was a late choice for Amy.

“She’s kind of a late bloomer to picking up the game,” the junior said. “She’s always played, but she never really committed herself. Going into her senior year, she wanted to play volleyball [in college], but she decided halfway through her senior year that she wanted to play golf.”

Steven did say, however, that he fully supports his little sister choosing Iowa and that he wanted the decision to be up to her and not based on his own golf aspirations.

Iowa head coach Mark Hankins said the family aspect of Steven’s golf game was part of what drew the sixth-year coach to recruiting the Peosta, Iowa, native out of high school in 2009.

“One of the things I look for in recruiting is intangibles,” Hankins said. “With Steven, his father is a good player, and his uncle is a good player. His mom was a good athlete, too, so he’s got good athletics in his genes. He's gotten to where he’s at due to his athleticism and ability to get better at the sport.”

Steven is off to a good start in this season; he’s shot the best scores for the Hawkeyes at the squads’ two tournaments this season. He finished in second place at the Golfweek Conference Challenge. Amy hasn’t made an appearance for the Black and Gold in a tournament yet.

Steven said he didn’t have one specific favorite memory of playing golf with his sister when they were younger, just that golf has been a constant force in their lives.

Teammate Joseph Winslow, who also has a sister who golfs, said having someone in the family who enjoys the same sport helped him become a better swinger. Being able to push each other to do better is an important part of improving at golf.

“I know from experience that that’s helped my sister,” the sophomore said. “But I think it’s the same for Steven and Amy. Both of them are super competitive, especially Steven from what I know of him. I’m sure he doesn’t let Amy just go out there and try to beat him.”

Neither of the Iowa Ihms has ever had a swing coach, but Steven said he’s learned a lot about the game from his time with the Black and Gold. Steven said Amy has learned some of the skills he’s picked up in recent years in conjunction with her recent foray into college golf.

“Nobody has ever really taught her how to golf,” Steven said. “She’s always kind of played with us, but we never had anyone to teach us around other than our dad.”

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